Gary police add on-the-scene details for Isom jury
By Ruth ann Krause Post-Tribune correspondent January 14, 2013 6:36PM
Kevin Isom. | Provided Photo~Sun-Times Media
Updated: January 14, 2013 10:09PM
Jurors hearing evidence in the death penalty murder trial of a Gary man charged with killing his wife and stepchildren heard more testimony about how members of the Gary police SWAT unit responded to a call of shots fired.
Gary police Lt. Jeff Trevino, an assistant team leader of SWAT, said as he arrived at the call at Lake Shore Dunes apartments and pulled near the guard house to suit up in his bullet-proof vest, helmet and other gear, he heard two gunshots.
Trevino said he encountered Patrolman Pete Baum crouched near a police car near 5708 Hemlock Ave..
They conversed briefly, then about four more shots rang out from the direction of the apartment. Trevino said he saw the muzzle flash and heard what sounded like rounds hitting a nearby tree.
The testimony came as the trial for Kevin Charles Isom entered its second week.
Isom, 47, has pleaded not guilty to three counts of murder in the shooting deaths of his wife, Cassandra Isom, 40, and stepchildren Michael Moore, 16, and Ci’Andria Cole, 13. He also is charged with attempted murder involving three Gary officers who responded to the complex.
Also testifying Monday were officers who served as SWAT sniper-observers, including Lt. Wendell Alan Ross, who took up a position from a upper-floor apartment in a nearby building. Ross and another sniper-observer on the team, Art Azcona, set up in a vacant apartment northeast of the site and took turns watching the apartment through the scopes of their .308-caliber rifles. Ross said he could see a silhouette moving in front of the apartment window.
Other officers took out the decorative exterior lights with bean-bag rounds fired from a shotgun. After attempts to reach Isom via a bullhorn and phone calls failed, officers used a wireless camera inside a ball to make contact, which also produced no results. Tear gas also was lobbed into the apartment.